This is the third collection of short stories released by fantasy author Neil Gaiman. It’s basically what any fan of Gaiman will expect and that is good a thing. In the weird and wonderful worlds he creates some characters escape and some don’t.

There’s a tale of a whole frozen world, but instead of ice, the landscape is made from books. Book igloo, book glacier and book bears.

Shadow, the main character from the novel American Gods, makes another appearance. The last time we saw him was in a story featured in Gaiman’s last collection, Fragile Things. There he was wandering around Scotland. This time he has made it as far as the north of England. It’s the last story in the book and is one of the creepiest.

With American Gods looking very likely to become a TV series, and only one novel for the makers to work from, Gaiman could be planning another novel.

He doesn’t say as much but he teases in his introduction, “There is one last story to be told, about what happens to Shadow when he reaches London. And then, if he survives that, it will be time to send him back to America. So much has changed, after all, since he went away.”

Fans of Doctor Who will be glad to hear there’s a story about the doctor in the book that Gaiman wrote a collection called 11 Doctors, 11 Stories. There’s a story about an Irish monk getting buried alive on a Scottish island which has some basis in truth. Gaiman’s illustrated novel, The Sleeper and the Spindle is also here in short story form.

There many more stories and poems and the book overall doesn’t disappoint. Gaiman seems to be one of those artists who knows exactly what they’re doing and whenever releases a piece of work, people are impressed.